Aberrant temporal patterning of slow-wave sleep in siblings of SIDS victims

Electroencephalogr Clin Neurophysiol. 1995 Feb;94(2):95-102. doi: 10.1016/0013-4694(94)00263-k.


We assessed the patterning of slow-wave EEG activity during sleep in siblings of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) victims over the first 6 months of life. Twelve hour overnight physiologic recordings were obtained from 25 apparently healthy subsequent siblings of SIDS victims and 25 control infants at 1 week, and 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6 months of age. The EEG activity was electronically bandpass filtered, leaving primarily activity ranging from 0.5 to 2.5 Hz (the delta frequency), and the filtered traces were full-wave rectified and integrated over 1 min periods. The recordings were divided into four 3 h segments beginning at sleep onset, and the mean integrated delta activity during quiet sleep was determined for each segment of the night. At 3 and 4 months postnatal age, SIDS siblings displayed increased integrated delta amplitude in the early morning hours relative to control infants. Most SIDS deaths occur in the early morning hours during the 2-4 month age range. We thus speculate that increased delta activity may be indicative of increased arousal thresholds in the early morning, which may contribute to SIDS deaths.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Electrocardiography
  • Electroencephalography*
  • Electromyography
  • Electrooculography
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Nuclear Family
  • Sleep Stages / physiology*
  • Sudden Infant Death* / genetics